Carers Trust Scotland works to proactively improve knowledge and understanding of the diverse lived experiences of unpaid carers across Scotland through our research work.

Key research in Scotland

Unpaid carers are not unsung heroes. We are forgotten, neglected and burnt out. Scotland summary

During May and June 2023, Carers Trust conducted a survey to better understand unpaid adult carers’ experiences of accessing support. The themes covered in the survey focused around
identification, support and services, and rights and entitlements.

In our research, we heard from 3,430 unpaid adult carers across the UK, including 651 living in Scotland. This summary report explores theexperiences and needs of unpaid adult carers in Scotland. 

This summary report tells a story of unpaid carers in Scotland who feel unrecognised, undervalued and are struggling to navigate the complex system of support, which is supposed to be there to help them

Experiences of Older Adult Unpaid Carers in Scotland

In March 2023, Carers Trust Scotland published research which explored the lived experiences of unpaid carers aged 65 and above across Scotland. The data from the research found that many older adult unpaid carers experience poor physical and mental health, feelings of loneliness and social isolation.

Additionally, many unpaid carers felt financially impacted due to their caring role, in particular those with underlying entitlement to Carers’ Allowance but do not receive it due to receiving a full State Pension.

Being a young carer is not a choice; it's just what we do. Scotland Summary

These findings show the stress experienced by many young carers and young adult carers as a result of their caring role is now being exacerbated by widespread anxieties about household finances as a result of the cost-of-living crisis.

I see no light at the end of the tunnel: an urgent call to action from Scotland’s unpaid carers

This report finds that many unpaid carers face serious emotional, financial and practical challenges as a result of the support they provide. Yet many unpaid carers are left struggling without enough support from the state, at a cost to their finances, their employment and their health.

Covid-19 in Scotland: The impact on unpaid carers and carer service support workers

This research was carried out to understand the experiences and challenges that the pandemic led to in Scotland for unpaid carers, and consequently, local carer support workers and local carer organisations. Many unpaid carers found they were spending more time caring, with less opportunity for a break.

Hear me, see me, support me and don’t forget me

This report was published in July 2020, looked at the impact of Covid-19 pandemic on young and young adult carers in Scotland. The report sought to understand their experiences of living and caring during the pandemic.

Whilst some had found positives - such as learning a new skill- many more described feeling stressed, unable to cope and overwhelmed by the pressures they felt.

The Student Carer Experience in Scotland

This research was undertaken in 2020 to examine student carers at college and university in order to better understand their challenges and improve support needs.

The research found that there were particular challenges for student carers who were studying, including no one at the college or university recognising them as an unpaid carer or receiving support.